Why are the first ten days of Dhul Hijjah more sacred than any other days?
Dhul Hijjah, the last month of Islamic lunar calendar has begun. On the tenth of this month, Muslims all over the world would commemorate Prophet Ibrahim's call to universal brotherhood and sisterhood and relive the sacrifices offered by mother Hajjar and her son Ismail. These days are defined as the best days of the year.
Significance of The First Ten Days
1. In these days, the idea of the oneness of God and oneness of humanity was introduced by the family of Prophet Ibrahim (PBUH) through offering sacrifices.
2. In these days, a vision of creating a community based on their devotion and prayer to God was promoted by the family of Prophet Ibrahim.
3. In these days, a call was made by Prophet Ibrahim to constantly strive to win over the hearts of people through learning about them and serving them.
4. In these days, the family of prophet Ibrahim proved through their living style that constant struggle is the essence of human existence.
In the Holy Qur'an Allah reminds us about the prayer of Prophet Ibrahim, which epitomizes the spirit and purpose of Hajj. In the prayer Prophet Ibrahim prays to Allah by saying, "O our Lord! surely I have settled a part of my offspring in a valley unproductive of fruit near Thy Sacred House, our Lord! that they may keep up prayer; therefore make the hearts of people incline towards them and provide them with fruits; haply they may be grateful." (14:37)
We can live by this spirit of Hajj anywhere in the world as only 3 million people would be in Makkah to personally perform the rituals associated with the pilgrimage.
Pledges For The First Ten Days
We can live the spirit of Hajj by:
1. Pledging to remove all traces of racism and bigotry from our hearts and minds.
2. Pledging to ourselves to identify with the rest of the humanity.
3. Pledging to constantly struggle for the improvement of all aspects of our lives.
4. Pledging that we would remain grateful to God by not wasting his resources in any sense of the term.
It is this spirit that was the real intent of this great institution and it is this spirit that each one of us can participate. For that you do not have to be present in Makkah only. But pledge is not enough, although it is the first step towards the direction of the spirit of Hajj.
Actions We Can Implement
In these ten days, we can focus on the following things:
1. Reminding and retelling the story of Hajj to our family members.
2. Outreaching to Christians and Jews who share Prophet Ibrahim with us with our version of the story.
3. Celebrating the spirit of Hajj through an interfaith form where the three monotheistic religions offer their tribute to the family of Prophet Ibrahim.
4. Identifying the marginalized and needy sections of the community and society and helping them in every possible way.
5. Planting a tree to show our gratefulness to the creation of God.